November 14, 2007

Welcome to Gopher Nation kid

Wednesday, November 14th is the start date of the early signing period for basketball and hockey. While Tubby is in Georgia to witness the signing of Ralph Sampson, the football team continues to rack up significant verbal commitments (although they can't sign on the dotted line until February).

We have 4 recent verbal commitments, the first 2 Skyline player have a very good chance at starting.

Troy Stoudermire - We got our first Dallas Skyline player! This is exciting. If you have been paying attention to this blog you know that I've been paying attention to Skyline's season. The Raiders have had 2 major story lines all season. The first being their dominant defense which has pitched 4 shutouts and has had 7 (out of 10) games allowing fewer than 10 points. The other storyline has been Stoudermire on offense.

  • 665 yds rushing and 6 TDs
  • 260 yds receiving and 3 TDs
  • 275 yds passing and 2 TDs
  • 2 punt return TDs
  • 11 total TDs scored and 2 passing TDs
Although "only" a 2-star athlete according to Rival, I expect Troy to be the real sleeper in this recruiting class. A potential starter at CB next season and down the road I would not be shocked to see him as a WR and play both sides of the ball at times. Stoudermire is a playmaker and you get the ball in his hands as often as you can.

Spencer Reeves - I haven't seen a hard confirmation that Reeves is also set to join Gopher Nation, but Stoudermire has indicated that he and Reeves will be coming together. This 3-star linebacker has a very good shot at starting immediately at LB. Reeves has been leading the Skyline defense that has been absolutely dominant. Skyline is 2nd in the state of Texas (behind #1 ranked Katy) for points allowed at 6.8 per game.

So we have 1/2 of the Skyline 4, but to be honest these were the 2 that I most wanted us to land. Getting Cooper and McKnight would just be gravy at this point. LB and CB are areas of greater need than S (with Lawrence, Theret, Thomas and maybe Brewster) or WR, in my opinion. Reeves and Maresh as 2 of our 3 starting LBs is an upgrade. Then Stoudermire starting opposite Steib will also be an upgrade in the pass defense.

Terrell Combs - 2-star, Athlete. Combs is another low rated kid who could be a real sleeper. He received scholarship offers from schools like W.Vir, Aub, FlorSt, L'ville, Mich, etc. So don't get hung up on the 2-star ranking too much. Combs is listed as an ATH and has played QB, RB, S, DE, WR and LB for his high school team. He racked up over 1,000 yds and 13 TDs as a receiver this season. Indications are that this big and fast kid will line up at LB for the gophers but time will tell.

D.L. Wilhite - 2-star, Athlete and high school teammate of Combs. Another big kid with speed who has been primarily a RB or LB and is expected to compete at LB. Like Combs, Wilhite is only a 2-star kid who was getting attention and offers from major college teams like West Virginia, Kentucky, Auburn, Michigan and Louisville.

People can continue to knock Brewster but he has landed the best gopher recruiting class in my lifetime while leading a team that is 1-10 (soon to be 1-11). That is flat out amazing, imagine the kids he'll land when(if) we are actually winning. I anticipate that no fewer than 5 true freshmen will start next year for the Gophers.
  • MLB - Sam Maresh
  • S - Simoni Lawrence
  • OLB - Spencer Reeves
  • WR - Brandon Green
  • CB - Troy Stoudermire
DB-Jonathan Dandridge, WR-Vincent Hill and TE-Eric Lair also stand a chance to play right away. And this is before the recruiting class is done.

Here are the remaining players that we have a good chance at landing who would make an already great class into a top 20 class...
  • S - Nolan Brewster - committed to Texas but there is still time
  • DE - Willie Mobley - #1 target, would start from day 1
  • CB - Traye Simmons - Big Play Traye, is a fast, 4-star JUCO
  • CB - Prentiss Wagner - 6'2", fast and puts up big numbers
  • DT - Jewhan Edwards (pictured right) - BIG and would also start immediately (imo)
  • QB - MarQueis Gray - 4-star kid with speed would look great in the spread coast
  • RB - LaMichael James
There are many others who would be great to have on board, but landing any of the kids listed above would be a coup and be a great base for future gopher football squads.


Jon Marthaler said...

I just don't see the Gophers getting Mobley. There have been rumors that he's all but committed to Ohio State already, and though it pains me to say it, that may be the right choice.

Tom said...

ya, I'm doubtful as well, but until he commits he is still on the list.

Unfortunately I think that the defensive line might actually be our area of greatest need. It doesn't matter who we have in pass defense if the QB has all day to throw they'll eventually get open. Mobley would be a massive upgrade IMMEDIATELY.

PJS said...

I love your positivity, Tom. That's all.